Sunday, October 01, 2006

Alien heads, bride, spectators, night scents, is she here, chatelaine, forbidden fruit, Latina and finery.

As is customary, large post for special day.

1. The curlers in our hair made us look like the Mysterons.

2. Fenella looked so beautiful in her wedding dress that I cried. Lucky the make-up was completely tear-proof, really. What I liked best of all (apart from her enormous smile) was that she loved her full-length veil so much that she kept it on for the whole day.

3. My mother turning up to watch us going into the church. Later I learnt that Oli's wife Caroline was there, too. And I loved all the passing children ohhing at Fenella and getting in the way of the camera.

4. Smelling the lavender bushes with Emma in the twilight, and spotting a flash of white on the other side of the hedge where the bride and groom were stealing a moment alone.

5. Jim telling us that while they waited in the church for the bride, every time the organ came to the end of a song, Andy would whisper: 'It's showtime.' Then the organ would start up again. 'And I would swear the opening chords were the wedding march every time, but it never was'.

6. I nipped upstairs to use the bridal dressing room in the castle, and once I met a tiny little dog on the landing and heard the laughter of a very old lady. Another time, just as it got dark, I met the lady herself, elegantly dressed and very sharp-looking. 'Oh you look beautiful,' she said. 'Are you having a good time?' I was more than a little starry by this time, so I babbled rather about how beautiful the castle looked, and how happy I was to be there and how much fun I was having.

7. The naughty look on the other Claire's face as she stole strawberries from the chocolate fountain table.

8. Andy's mother dancing to Macarena.

9. Fiona, Jim and Dan sitting in Wetherspoons in their wedding finery. Our Wetherspoons is the old opera house, and secretly, I thought they were the only ones properly dressed for the occasion.